Number of Participants: 11
Hours Donated: 10
Value of Time Served: $930
Event Type: Civic & Community
Date: December 22, 2022
Student Council members at East Lake Elementary School in the Massapequa School District took seriously their obligation to help other children, which is why they put so much effort into promoting the holiday toy drive.
When it was all done, East Lake students and staff donated enough toys to fill 17 large bags, which were then given to the John Theissen Children’s Foundation to benefit sick and underprivileged children.
“It makes me feel good because we can help kids out there whose parents can’t afford presents for them,” said Kendyl Chidichimo.
Added Liliana Ippolito, “Some people don’t have as much as we have.”
Students said they were touched by the story of John Theissen, who started the toy drive 30 years ago for children in hospitals after he was treated for a brain tumor. Since then, it has grown immensely with schools across Long Island collecting toys for the cause. Fifth grader Mia Piatti said she is inspired by how Theissen strives to make the holidays better for children who are facing the same adversity that he once did.
The student council, led by teacher Brett Hoehn, helped make the toy drive a success by spreading the word. Fifth grader Luciano Cremonese said they made posters, which they hung throughout the school urging people to donate. Every day, a donation box in the lobby quickly filled up with toys.
Photo caption: Massapequa Superintendent congratulated the East Lake Elementary School student council on running a successful holiday toy drive for the John Theissen Children’s Foundation.
Photo courtesy of the Massapequa School District